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Abundance: The Future is Better Than You Think

Powerful Essays
People tend to focus on the flaws when it comes to humanity’s ability to provide goods and services. News stories on income inequality, lack of adequate healthcare services for hundreds of millions of people, the large number of people who go hungry every day, etc. often capture the attention of humanity better than any other type of story. Combine this with an increasing population, the doomsay predictions about global warming, and the recent economic recession, and it appears that solutions to many of the world’s current and future problems are out of reach. This, though, is not the viewpoint taken by Peter H. Diamandis and Steven Kolter in their book Abundance: The Future is Better Than You Think. They acknowledge that the world have many problems and has future ones that humanity will need to solve, but they believe that humanity is up to the task.

In their book, these two authors explain how humanity’s lot on Earth has improved at an exponential rate, how humanity can continue to grow to meet the problems of today and tomorrow, and why it is likely that humanity will likely succeed in creating abundance. One of the most striking examples is aluminum, which was once valued more that gold in the 19th century and now is one of the most readily available metals for consumers. This belief in humanity’s ability to create abundance comes from the idea that: 1) technologies in many areas, especially in computers and processors, growing at an exponential rate give humanity tools more powerful and more affordable than ever to communicate, to solve problems, and to educate others 2) The increased power and affordability of technology allows individuals to come up with, test, and ultimately create solutions that before were solely the d...

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...s. It helps the reader trust in the ability of mankind and gives one hope that the future will be better; it just does not tell you how exactly the future will be better, and, given how wrong people have been about gains in standard of living, Diamandis and Kotler do well to keep an open-mind about what the future will look like.

Works Cited

Romer, Paul. "Increasing Returns and Long-Run Growth."Journal of Political Economy. 94.5 (1986): 1002-1037. 17 Nov. 2013.

Lucas, Robert E.: “On the Mechanics of Economic Development,” Journal of Monetary Economics, 22 (1988): 3–42.

Thomas, Lacy Glenn. "Regulation and Firm Size: FDA Impacts on Innovation." RAND Journal of Economics. 21.4 (1990): 497-517. 17 Nov. 2013.

Smil, Vaclav. "Power Density Primer." . N.p., 08 May 2010. 29 Sep 2013.
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